America’s education reform movement gets out of school this summer with a four-month campaign to help redefine learning in the digital age through dozens of activities for youth, parents, and educators, dubbed the “Summer of Making and Connecting.”
Engaging thousands of people across the country, the summer campaign will feature a growing roster of events and activities designed to make learning more relevant to young people, to real work and real life, and to the opportunities of the 21st Century. Most activities do not take place in schools – highlighting how learning occurs everywhere, all the time – but can easily be connected to school curriculums in the fall.
The campaign was announced today as leaders in business and education met at the Re-Imagining Education Summit in Washington, D.C., hosted by the U.S. Department of Education and the MacArthur Foundation.
Supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and driven by the National Writing Project’s Educator Innovator Initiative and Mozilla’s Maker Party, the summer campaign is an open invitation to develop a range of activities that will allow educators, young people and others to sample Connected Learning. Current partners include the Alliance for Excellence in Education, Born This Way Foundation, HASTAC, and MIT’s Media Lab.
The following videos are a 9 part series on how to use Windows Live Movie Maker. Live Movie Maker is a proprietary video editing software application which allows Windows operating system users to edit their own videos. This version of Movie Maker is compatible with Windows 7 or more recent operating systems. It is not compatible with earlier versions of Windows OS like Windows XP.
There are nine videos in this series although you can only see one player. The single player hosts all nine videos (thank you YouTube playlist). The series starts with Part 1: General Overview. To access the other eight videos, you must click on the text that says "Playlist" located at the bottom left of the player. You can then choose from the selection of other videos.
Note: This video educast series covers the later version of Windows Movie Maker, not the earliest version. If you are interested in learning the first version that comes with Windows XP and earlier Windows operating systems, click here.
Creating and reading a timeline is a skill introduced in elementary grades. For a second grader her first timeline might be autobiographical, which is a good way for students to begin understanding what a timeline is - a linear graphic representation of major events in chronological order. Students are exposed to more timelines as they study historical events, biographies, and cultural trends. The information can seem like a cluster of dates and facts. But delve deeper and timelines reveal relationships between sequences of events to show shifts and changes from one occurrence to the next.
Turning the timeline format from pencil to digital is easy with online timeline generators. They make learning interactive, engaging, and provide students another way to report research information.
Capzles is a free timeline creation tool that’s fairly easy to use. It allows users to insert videos, music, blogs, photos, and documents to create a multimedia timeline or story.
Timetoast allows users to create a timeline in minutes. The look of the digital timeline is similar to a traditional drawn timeline - the layout is simple. Images and text can accompany each mark on the timeline. This allows users to include more information for explanations. The format can also be converted from timeline to a text version - dividing the information as a table.
Tips for starting a timeline:
Choose an event, process, or trend that has a strong chronological sequence.
Gather research information.
Write a short description of each event.
Include occurrences leading up to significant events.
Imagine you are an 11th grade student taking American History today. Your teacher walks into the classroom and asks you to create a video that discusses the significance of the Space Race between the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War, but you can only use found footage on YouTube for the project. Does that sound nuts?
Many red alarms may sound off in your head.... Our school doesn't allow YouTube or isn't that in violation of copyright? or how are my students going to create a video for school? or what learning value would this offer my students? or what Standards address this assignment?
These are all very important questions that educators should ask. There are probably a ton more. In short, the answer is that, this can happen and it will be of tremendous importance to your students' learning.
The video below addresses the value added when producing remix videos. It discusses the affordances of creating personal digital stories using found media and how it can help to reinforce online research skills, understanding of fair use and copyright law, along with visual rhetoric and digital literacy (which comes with traditional forms of digital storytelling as well). The video provides insight on how the production process of making a video can incorporate all these skills and literacies. Although, the video explores the process of producing a personal story with political implications, you will be able to make the connection to how this process can directly link to larger topics that would be covered in core content areas - like American History.
Note: Student projects about the Space Race will soon follow.
In the 1950s, Art Clokey created beloved claymation character Gumby and sidekick Pokey for a stop motion claymation television series that ran in the 50s and 60s. Since then, stop motion animation has made it to the big screen with movies like Wallace & Gromit and Fantastic Mr. Fox. Can this digital art form make it to the elementary classroom? The answer is an emphatic yes! Making a stop motion animation is now easier than ever. All it takes is a digital camera, simple art materials, and editing software such as iMovie or Windows Movie Maker. JellyCam by TicklyPictures.com is a free online stop motion maker that’s simple and easy to use. For the iPad, an app called myCreate by iCreate to Educate is a great starter for making stop motion animation.
One of the major reasons stop motion animation is worth trying with students is because it’s a lot of creative fun yet requires conceptual thinking. It’s “undercover learning” - students are so engaged they don’t know they’re learning. Planning the animation challenges students to visually lay out a scene frame by frame so the viewer understands the story or concept as it unfolds. Writing also becomes more meaningful since every animation starts with a script.
With stop motion, figurines, crafts, or any hands-on materials can be used to tell stories, recreate a historical event, or explain a science concept such as the life cycle of an organism or transformation of a solid to liquid to gas.
It’s a way for students to take full control of their learning and communicate a concept in an artistic way. It may not be for everyone since it takes time, patience, collaboration and hundreds of frame shots for a one-minute piece. But it may be the one multimedia project that makes a difference for the student who discovers the love for creating artistically and digitally.
Check out Pea Soup (time to get serious), one of the winning clips from Science Centre Singapore's stop motion animation competition Scinemation 2011, and see how a team of students visually expressed climate change.
To some, a Twitter chat can mean endless banter that can cause major distraction. Young people love to use the popular platform to communicate with their friends on what they are doing at any given moment. To educators, this kind of use doesn't jibe in the classroom...and mobile devices in many schools are outlawed for that reason alone (well, it's more about texting than Twitter...but these are similar issues).
At KQED, we have looked at Twitter and researched ways to shift its use to measure learning, something that teachers would want to introduce to their kids. KQED Do Now has become that model where high school students from all over the Bay Area participate in a weekly Twitter chat and discuss current events. They talk politics and policy, social issues, science, and even arts and popular culture. Last week's Do Now, students investigated contact sports and concussions, looking at research conducted at Stanford University about helmet safety in football. On Twitter, they discussed whether new policies should be put in place.
We collect and archive these tweets in our weekly Do Now Round Up. Here's one from a few weeks back where students graded President Obama's performance during his first four years as president.
Remixing video has become a popular cultural movement. We see it all over the internet where people re-purpose video to convey an alternative message. The Mister Rogers remix entitled Garden of Your Mind, produced by PBS Digital Studios takes hundreds of clips from dozens of episodes to create an inspirational song about learning. The audio of his voice is put through an auto-tuner to make it sound like he's singing.
This was made by professional producers, but remix culture is really a DIY movement and the tools are available for pretty much anyone who has a computer and internet connection. One relatively new tool that allows you to edit videos from YouTube is Easy YouTube Video Downloader, a free add-on from Mozilla that allows you to download videos from YouTube. It's an add-on which means that it creates an interactive button underneath the YouTube player to let a user download any video on YouTube. Once the video is downloaded, you can import it into a video editing program like iMovie or Windows Movie Maker to edit.
Today, science demands sophisticated skills not generally taught as part of standard science curricula. Ideally, classroom instructional strategies in the sciences should teach a scientific body of knowledge and cultivate other abilities required for the practice and process of science. There are many connections between the skills used for media making and those required for scientists. For this reason, student media-making projects are an excellent way to introduce these 21st century proficiencies, many of which are also recognized in the Common Core Content Standards for English Language Arts and Literacy in Science.
For example,both scientists and media makers must collaborate with colleagues, be able to make critical and focused observations, use technology for data collection and analysis, understand and evaluate information and processes and create multimedia content to communicate their idea. (see Media Making in the Science Classroom for more on this topic).
How do we go about coaching our students to create meaningful science-based media that enhances their own understanding of a topic as well as promotes understanding by others?
One answer is to scaffold media making projects so that the desired outcomes are reached. We have polled our KQED science colleagues to break down the process of scientific storytelling and to guide the development of the following resources:
Choosing Content - how do you choose the right subject for your media project? Explore the five general categories that science journalism reports fall into.
Choosing Your Media Format - once you’ve decided on the story you want to tell, how will you decide to tell it? Use this chart to determine what type of media will be best to use to communicate your story.
Choosing Equipment - you’ve got your story and type of media decided, the final step before producing your piece is to find the equipment and software that fits your needs. This document guides you through some options based upon the type of media you are creating as well as your budget and technical needs.
Rubrics - finally, it is important that you are very clear with students on what is expected of them. Adjust these rubric templates so that they communicate your goals for slideshow/video projects and/or mapping projects.
These documents are just a sampling of all the resources available to assist you in leading media making projects in your science classroom. Additionally, be sure to check out:
Creating User-Generated Media Workshop - on Teachers’ Domain (free registration required); This workshop shows teachers how to use Teachers' Domain media to produce their own videos, and then encourages them to think about how they will organize a similar experience for students.
Building Video Literacy - on Teachers’ Domain; explore strategies for teaching students about how videos are created to help them make smart decisions when creating their own media
Building Blocks - on Teachers’ Domain; search the term “building blocks” to find 99 pieces of media you and your students can download, share and remix into new media projects (select Download, Share, & Remix on the Permitted Use filter)
Today is Banned Website Awareness Day, and all across the country, educators are doing their part to raise awareness of how overly restrictive blocking of educational websites affects student learning.